Continuing on that same theme I have talked about a few times before…everything I know I learned from Broadway musicals, the first thing that came to mind when I saw this prompt was the musical Bye Bye Birdie. It came out in the sixties, and I was in the cast of the play in high school. Had to get that in, didn’t I? The song in the show that I was reminded of was “Honestly Sincere.”
When Conrad Birdie, the up-and-coming teen pop idol (based unashamedly on Elvis Presley), is asked how he had gotten to the cusp of stardom, he replies that his good fortune has everything to do with his “sincerity.” But, although he was not cognizant of it, his sincerity was inauthentic. It was something that his manager and his public relations guy told him he had to convince his audience he was.
Much like, as I see it, the manner in which certain politicians seem to be navigating the election waters. I’m not up for any discussion about the presidential race, but i will tell you what I see, now that I have stepped into my 60s. I see people who want to lead our country based on what’s in it for them. When they say they want to help their constituents, I think they mean they want to help themselves.
When they say they want to offer equality to all the citizens of this country, I think they really want to make more money for themselves. I know, I know, it’s impossible to see within a person’s heart. But I will say that the actions I observe are making me believe that any concern about a person’s sincerity when it comes to the political arena has been, for want of another word, deleted.
Google says sincere means “free from pretense or deceit; proceeding from genuine feelings.” I have not yet seen this in any of the campaign reporting, candidate speeches, or ever-present news statements concerning the election. It makes me sad.
Maybe at my age people become jaded. Maybe I was too much of a Pollyanna when I was younger. Maybe this is how it always has been. Truth is, this is absolutely the first time in my life that an election has made me feel afraid. Sorry for the Debby Downer post.